In this paper, we develop an energy-focused model of an industrial roller hearth heat treating furnace. The model represents radiation heat transfer with nonparticipating gas and convective heat transfer. The model computes the exit temperature profile of the treated steel parts and the energy consumption and efficiency of the furnace. We propose a dual iterative numerical scheme to solve the conservation equations and validate its efficacy by simulating the dynamics of the furnace during startup, as well as for steady-state operation. A case study investigates energy consumption within the furnace under temperature control. We first consider a heuristic control strategy using simple linear controllers. A response surface approach is then used to find the optimal set points that minimize energy consumption while ensuring desired part temperature properties are met when processing is complete. With optimized set points, 4.8% less energy per part is required versus the heuristic set points.
Energy-Oriented Modeling and Optimization of a Heat Treating Furnace
Contributed by the Dynamic Systems Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF DYNAMIC SYSTEMS, MEASUREMENT, AND CONTROL. Manuscript received January 11, 2016; final manuscript received December 9, 2016; published online April 13, 2017. Assoc. Editor: Yang Shi.
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Heng, V. R., Ganesh, H. S., Dulaney, A. R., Kurzawski, A., Baldea, M., Ezekoye, O. A., and Edgar, T. F. (April 13, 2017). "Energy-Oriented Modeling and Optimization of a Heat Treating Furnace." ASME. J. Dyn. Sys., Meas., Control. June 2017; 139(6): 061014. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4035460
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